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2017 News

Commissioners Approve 33 Contract Resolutions Involving 15 County Departments During January 17 Business Session

January 18, 2017

The second 2018 meeting of the Board of Bucks County Commissioners was a brisk, 24-minute affair that was devoid of proclamations, commendations or public comment. However, Commissioners Robert G. Loughery, chairman, Charles H. Martin and Diane M. Ellis-Marseglia, LCSW unanimously approved 33 contract resolutions and a series of 22 budget adjustments inside the Doylestown Administration Building.

A clear highlight of the agenda was the approval of the County’s annual Agricultural Preservation allocation from the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, Bureau of Farmland Preservation. That $2.5 million total will be submitted to the state for matching funds over the next year to continue the popular program. According to County Agricultural Land Preservation Director Rich Harvey, the program currently includes 206 preserved farms totaling 16,500 acres. He has received eight new applications for 2018 that are presently under review. The current waiting list has 43 properties, approximately 10 of which will join the program this year. “That is very good, and it’s a very successful program,” Chairman Loughery praised.

For the Area Agency on Aging, the commissioners agreed to a one-year, $26,649 revenue contract renewal with the Bucks County Drug and Alcohol Commission, Inc. to provide drug take-back, gambling and medication education programs.

The board approved a pair of contracts with Valley Forge-based Child & Family Focus, the first a one-year, $513,200 Children & Youth Socials Services agency renewal to provide high fidelity wrap around services and the other a one-year, $152,000 Mental Health/Development Programs renewal to provide respite services, high fidelity wrap around services and peer support for children and young adults.

The commissioners’ support of the Family Service Association of Bucks County homeless shelter in Levittown continued with a $150,000 appropriation for housing and emergency shelter services. The board also locked up 11 one-year insurance policies with Warrington’s KMRD Partners, Inc. for a total cost of $1.315 million. That total represented a reduction from previous years despite the fact that a couple new policies (including cyber liability) were added. The largest pieces of the contract involve property insurance ($293,750), excess workers compensation ($254,062) and law enforcement liability ($226,104).

Another large-ticket item that met approval was a three-year, $2.118 million Information Technology renewal with Microsoft Licensing, GP via CDW Government, Inc. of Vernon Hills, IL. This is a Microsoft Enterprise Agreement for subscription licenses, software subscription rights, access to online services, and storage array and support.

The board also approved six contracts for various items at Neshaminy Manor, the County’s award-winning long term care facility. In addition, they signed off on a one-year, contract renewal with B&B Turf Management, LP of Fallsington to manage the Oxford Valley Golf Course, a nine-hole track that opens during the spring annually.

In the Planning Commission realm, the commissioners approved $855,170 through the Bucks County Redevelopment Authority of Bristol for gaming fund grant resolution, subrecipient agreements, signature authorizations and other related documents on behalf of the Lower Bucks County Public Safety Training Center, the Bucks County Health Improvement Partnership (BCHIP) and the Bucks County Major Incident Response Team (MIRT) for equipment. The MIRT funding is new for 2018.

During his Chief Operating Officer report, Brian Hessenthaler lauded the County Emergency Management Agency and General Services for their work during the recent inclement weather. He also noted the commissioners’ hiring of Deanna Giorno as the new chief clerk/assistant to the COO, effective January 20, 2018. Ms. Giorno previously served as executive assistant to Register of Wills Don Petrille.

The next meeting of the Board of Bucks County Commissioners will take place at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, February 7, 2018, in the Commissioners’ Meeting Room of the Bucks County Administration Building (1st Floor), 55 E. Court St., Doylestown, PA 18901. For a complete audio account of the January 17, 2018 business meeting, please visit the official county website, www.BucksCounty.org, and click on the “Audio from Last Mtg” link on the home page.